Will city mandate guards at recreational pot shops? – Ontario Argus Observer


ONTARIO — Following the fatal stabbing of a local man on Sunday at a recreational marijuana dispensary in Ontario, the Ontario City Council opened a discussion at its work session on Thursday about the possibility of introducing measures to institute mandatory security at dispensary locations within the city.

It is noteworthy that the footage from the interior and exterior security cameras at the dispensary was integral in catching the two men from Nampa alleged in the crime.

Though the City Council didn’t make a decision, the matter was deferred to the marijuana ad hoc committee for recommendations.

Councilor Freddy Rodriguez started off the discussion by saying how he feels that businesses such as dispensaries “attract certain demographics.” Rodriguez alleges that the stabbing incident is “the extension of Caldwell into Ontario.”

Rodriguez proposes that the city should now require these businesses to hire security guards.

“Let’s shoot it down to the marijuana ad hoc committee,” he said.

Ontario Police Chief Steven Romero was asked by the Council to comment and answer questions. He said that the dispensaries opened around the same time that he arrived, roughly eight months ago.

Councilor Marty Justus asked Romero if he had noticed a pattern in the number of incidents at the dispensaries in town.

“I wouldn’t say a pattern,” Romero responded.

The chief then explained how in eight months’ time, there had been isolated incidents of unruly conduct in which police were called at each of the locations, but emphasized, “things happen in many places.”

This included a near-fatal stabbing of a man at the Arby’s restaurant inside the Pilot Truck Stop in Ontario on December 21, 2019.

Romero told the Council

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